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Metabolon and Sheffield Institute for Translational Neuroscience Join Forces to Propel ALS Research and Biomarker Discovery

Posted In: Company News

Collaboration aims to transform research to improve patient outcomes and enhance the understanding of ALS and motor neuron diseases (MND)

MORRISVILLE, NC, January 23, 2024 – Metabolon, Inc., the global leader in providing metabolomics solutions advancing a wide variety of life science research, diagnostic, therapeutic development, and precision medicine applications, today announced a strategic partnership with the Sheffield Institute for Translational Neuroscience (SITraN) and A Multicentre Biomarker Resource Strategy in ALS (AMBRoSIA). The collaboration aims to explore novel pathogenic mechanisms of ALS that may expand therapeutic possibilities to a patient population in need of additional treatment options.

Motor neuron diseases (MND), which include ALS, are progressive disorders that affect voluntary muscle control. Currently, there is no cure for these diseases, andapproximately 80% of people with ALS die within two to five years of diagnosis. Existing treatment options solely focus on managing symptoms and providing supportive care.

In the quest to uncover the elusive causes of ALS and other MNDs, where a combination of genetic and environmental factors is suspected, the integration of metabolomics becomes paramount. This collaborative effort aims to accelerate the understanding of ALS through a comprehensive biomarker approach, leveraging the power of metabolomics to deepen the understanding of ALS and serves as a unique modality that spans both internal and environmental inputs.

AMBRoSIA is a Motor Neurone Disease Association (MNDA) funded longitudinal cohort of individuals from three UK tertiary ALS referral clinics in Sheffield, Oxford, and London.  Metabolon will profile matched plasma and cerebral spinal fluid (CSF) from patients diagnosed with an MND (mostly ALS) as well as plasma and CSF from non-affected controls.

“We are very excited to be collaborating with Metabolon on this important programme of work which aims to understand in detail the metabolism of cells within the nervous system, including motor neurons.  ALS/MND is a cruel disease where there is a huge unmet need for better neuroprotective therapies and improved diagnostic tools. We aim to understand what goes wrong with metabolism in ALS/MND compared to healthy control participants and to identify potential pathways that can be tackled with novel therapeutic approaches.  We also aim to discover metabolic biomarkers specific to different subgroups of patients with ALS/MND which may allow precision medicine approaches – targeting the right treatment to the right patient group” said Professor Dame Pamela Shaw, Director of SITraN and Professor of Neurology at the University of Sheffield, UK.    

“Metabolon is thrilled to collaborate with SITraN, a leading institution in translational neuroscience, and AMBRoSIA. Together, we aim to drive significant progress in ALS research and biomarker discovery, bringing us closer to effective diagnostic and therapeutic solutions for this challenging disease,” said Karl Bradshaw, Chief Business Officer at Metabolon.

“AMBRoSIA is the largest study of its kind to be funded by the MND Association and has been instrumental in taking the candidate biomarker neurofilament light into clinical trials, which shows the power of having a resource of multi-centre longitudinal collection of samples. We are delighted that the resource continues to be utilised inthis new partnership driving precision medicine biomarkers discovery towards new treatments for ALS/MND”, said Dr. Sophie Nyberg, Research Programmes and Partnerships Manager at the MND Association.

To learn more about Metabolon’s research and development efforts in neurodegenerative diseases, visit https://www.metabolon.com/applications/neuroscience/.

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